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It’s Going to a Wireless Bonanza…Maybe

Back in the heady days of the dot-com boom, Forrester was among the most notorious when it came to issuing bullish forecasts when it came to e-commerce.

It was a great marketing move by because it fed into the frenzy among start-ups, VCs and investors who believed e-commerce was going to destroy their bricks and mortar rivals.
Fast-forward 10 years and the wireless Web, and you have a new Forrester. In this case, it’s eMarketer leading the charge with forecasts that wireless revenue is going to explode over the next five years. Be it mobile entertainment, advertising or gaming , revenue is heading up, up and, baby, away!
Given my recalcitrance about how quickly the wireless world is going evolve from voice to data, you can understand my skepticism about eMarketer’s optimism. It’s like eMarketer sees the wireless market going from zero to 60 in no time at all, which is the same pit that Forrester fell into a decade ago.

It’s not to suggest that one day the entertainment, advertising and gaming markets aren’t going to be huge but I’ll be surprised if they grow as quickly as eMarketer suggests.

Why the negative attitude?

Well, I just don’t believe people are going to be using wireless devices as actively as people think. People will surf the Web, check e-mail and use location-based services but I just can’t see music, gaming and advertising becoming that huge that soon. eMarketer, for example, believes the wireless gaming market will grow from 155 million users to 500 million.

In any event, here’s some eMarketer charts for your viewing pleasure. If you’re among the bulls, I’d be interested in why.

eMarketer Entertainment
eMarketer Advertising
eMarketer Gaming
More: In wireless news, Gizmodo is reporting that Apple is working on a tethering plan with AT&T for the iPhone.

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